Pine Tree Pirates (0-4, 0-1)

Vs.

Marshall Mavericks (2-2, 0-1)

7:30 p.m. Friday

Maverick Stadium, Marshall

 

Coaches
  • Pine Tree: David Collins
  • Marshall: Clint Harper

 

Last week

 

Next week
  • Pine Tree: vs. Texas High, Oct. 10
  • Marshall: at Longview, Oct. 10

 

Playmakers

Pine Tree

  • QB/WR Mason Hays, Sr., 6-1, 210 (200 passing yards, 5 TDs, 4 INTS, 289 rushing yards, 2 TDs)
  • QB Daniel Bonamy, Jr. (213 passing yards, 1 TD, 2 INTs)
  • RB Quay Ward, Sr., 5-8, 185 (78 carries, 341 yards, 2 TDs)
  • WR Jonathan Giddings, Sr., 5-10, 200 (15 catches, 154 yards, 4 TDs)
  • OL Chris Charvis, Sr., 6-0, 300
  • DB Tekanya Redden, Sr., 5-10, 175 (41 tackles)

 

Marshall

  • OL Chett Munden, Sr., 6-6, 305 (committed to North Texas)
  • RB Deondre Osborne, Jr., 5-9, 210 (37 carries, 243 yards, 3 rushing TDs)
  • WR John Love, Sr., 5-11, 185 (23 receptions, 242 receiving yards, 3 TDs)
  • DL Trey Valentine, Sr., 6-3, 226
  • DL Antonio Washington, Jr., 6-1, 250
  • OL Tyler Hodges, Sr., 6-1, 280
  • OL C.J. Powell, Sr., 6-2, 295
  • QB Justin Hart, Jr., 6-0, 160 (660 passing yards, 6 TDs, 2 INT)
  • QB Cameron Haller, Soph., 5-11, 195 (45 carries, 528 yards, 7 TDs)

 

Just the facts
  • Since 1980, Marshall and Pine Tree have met 21 times. Marshall holds a 17-3-1 series advantage since that point in time.
  • Pine Tree has not defeated Marshall since 2011, and it served as the program's only win that season.
  • Marshall's 3-2 start is its best since 2010. Defeating Pine Tree would give the Mavericks their best season start since 2009 when it incidentally defeated the Pirates for a 4-2 start.
  • Pine Tree is looking for its first road win since Sept. 27, 2013 when it defeated Lindale in non-district play. The Pirates have not won a district game since defeating Marshall in the 2011 season finale for both teams.
  • Pine Tree is headed by first-year coach David Collins.
  • The Pirates went through a quarterbacks coach change this week after former Louisana-Monroe quarterback Kolton Browning opted to restart his playing career with the Brooklyn Bolts of the Fall Experimental Football League. The Pirates made another notable hire by brining in former Iowa State and Illinois State quarterback Jared Barnett. Barnett was coached by Collins in high school as was Browning.

 

Pine Tree receiver Jonathan Giddings is a player Marshall will have to watch closely in the red zone. He has four touchdowns on 15 mostly short-range throws. (Christopher R. Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Key matchup: Pine Tree's balanced attack versus Marshall's defensive front. There's no question the Pirates need more from their offense, but there are some pieces in place to threaten the Mavericks' defense.

Running back Quay Ward and all-around athlete Mason Hays have put up some good numbers on the ground and receiver Jonathan Giddings gets in done in the red zone with four touchdown passes on just 15 receptions and 154 total yards. Pine Tree has enough to beat Marshall's defense if it overlooks the Pirates.

However, there is some Mavericks defensive front talent that could suffocate Pine Tree. Defensive linemen Antonio Washington and Trey Valentine are big roadblocks Ward, Hays and the offensive line will have to deal with. If the opposing defense can consistently get to Hays or fellow quarterback Daniel Bonamy, the Pirates will be in serious trouble.

Pine Tree faces a tall defensive task. Marshall quarterback Justin Hart is a very good passer and Cameron Haller will get behind the center at times. Haller is dangerous runner with more than 500 yards in five games. When Haller isn't running, Marshall has a good set of running backs to turn toward.

The Mavericks should be able to move the ball effectively in Friday's game. It will be up to the Pine Tree defense to force a few stops and its offense to match the overall Mavericks output.

Don't be surprised if: the Pirates stick around. With losses for both teams last week, this game will serve as a desperate stand. Neither team can afford a second early league loss with stiff competition moving to 2-0 and 1-1 elsewhere in District 15-5A.

Losing this game will be a serious blow to postseason chances.

Marshall's Cameron Haller runs through the arms of Hallsville's Jacob Taylor during their game Friday night in Hallsville. (Mark Martin, ETSN.fm)